Screenings of Pixar’s ‘Lightyear’ have been banned by fourteen top marketers. Know why

Walt Disney has been unable to secure authorization to screen its new Pixar film Lightyear in 14 Middle Eastern and Asian countries, and the animated feature is unlikely to debut in China, the world’s largest movie market.

Authorities in China had requested modifications to the film, that they should cut off the kiss between two female married characters which Disney refused to do, and a Lightyear producer told reporters that she thought the film would not open there either. The movie features a same-sex couple sharing a brief kiss, prompting a ban in the United Arab Emirates.

The couple’s relationship, according to the UAE, violated the country’s media content rules. In several Middle Eastern countries, homosexuality is considered a crime. The UAE’s Media Regulatory Office announced on Monday that the film would not be shown due to “safety” concerns based on “proper age categorization,” as well as a violation of “the country’s media content guidelines.”

The United Arab Emirates banned the film on Monday. The country is joined by Bahrain, Egypt, Indonesia, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Malaysia, Oman, the Palestinian territories, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Syria.

The public’s reaction to Disney’s decision to include a scene featuring a same-sex connection was mixed; many people said their children were too young for it, and homosexuality should not be pushed among children at such a young age. Other people were more open-minded about the decision and were content to see the movie.

Chris Evans provides the voice of main character Buzz Lightyear in the film, which is a spin-off of the “Toy Story” franchise.  Buzz’s best friend Alisha Hawthorne, played by Uzo Aduba, kisses her same-sex partner in one scene.  The famous actor Chris Evan, himself said any objections to Lightyear over LGBTQ issues were “frustrating”.  He also stated “It’s great that we are a part of something that’s making steps forward in the social inclusion capacity, but it’s frustrating that there are still places that aren’t where they should be,” Evans said.